For centuries, flowers have conveyed our wordless messages to one another with beauty and grace. But now, we can give them our “voice”.
About this project
It was by sheer accident that FloraMissives came into existence. For months, I had been trying to come up with a unique medium for a written letter, to increase the probability of it being read by the “who’s who” of the art, government, entertainment, and conservational arenas. All of my letter ideas involved various kinds of paper, but I wanted to find something more dexterous and original than cardstock or gloss. That’s when my eyes landed on a silk scarf I received for Christmas a few months prior. My mind immediately began racing with ideas, but was any of it at all possible and had it been done before? The answer to both questions was yes…sort of.
After finally figuring out how to get my old inkjet printer to legibly print on the fabric, I began searching to see if written messages on silk were already an established practice. Turns out it was, but more than two THOUSAND years ago.
I came across the 1973 discovery of the ancient Mawangdui silk manuscripts from the 1st century BC on Taoism, medical sciences, geography, philosophy, and history. These manuscripts, though primarily rich in ancient Chinese documentation, were equally endowed with beauty, elegance, and class. It’s those same demanding attributes that I wanted in my own letter, and I was astounded to find that the practice all but died in antiquity at the advent of paper in 150BC. The revival of this exquisite medium became my biggest motivator, and ultimately yielded the gardens of FloraMissives. Each missive is almost entirely handmade, so each FloraMissive is uniquely and carefully crafted…just like true flowers. The brevity of their form (lost, once their opened) and relative structural fragility was also intentionally mimicked after true flowers.
This 11×17 rose is called: Nola Granda, while its smaller cousin (8.5″x11″)is called: Nolita. When FloraMissives are established, customers can expect 2-3 new flowers or arrangements released, each season. Some missives will fall dormant during certain times of year and won’t be available again until their respective seasons. Right now, we open the 2015 Summer Season with Nola Granda. If I reach my goal, I’ve made plans to also release 2 additional rose types (VerTibe & VerSibe Blooms) and a Calla Lily (CoCo-Danielle) this Summer.
Act 1: The Seedling – inaugural campaign introducing FloraMissives to the world and accruing capital and equipment to get FloraMissives off the ground.
The money received from this campaign will largely go towards the purchase of an Anajet Sprint DTG printer (Used or Refurbished), which generally costs between $6k-$8k. Though I’m able to print the messages with my inkjet printer, the process is arduous, messy, time-consuming, and inconsistent. A Direct To Garment printer would considerably facilitate these processes, yield more missive prints/hour -thus considerably increase my output numbers, and greatly improve the overall quality of the prints. All of this massively assists the establishment of the HoneyB Corps, but I don’t see why FloraMissives can’t assist your goals and express your sentiments as well!
For Campaign Act I, all FloraMissives have default features, but you would be helping me to change that. Once FloraMissives are established, customers will be able to choose from an assortment of beautiful fabrics and in the style of any existing or imagined flower. You could choose: size of missive, arrangement fillers, type of fabric, font, color of font, color of fabric, color and kind of foliage, color and kind of stem, color of threading, boarders/clip art/watermarks, scents, packaging, bouquet accessories, and seals.
The remainder of the goal funds will go towards creating the FloraMissive rewards for my backers. Each Nola Granda is comprised of:
- One of my designed Sepal fittings to anchor the Rose head.
- One of a number of artificial stems (14″ & 27″ reasonably pliant stems)
- 11″x17″ or 8.5″x11″ cut of fabric
- One of my scented inks to print the missive
- A decorated long pin or earring stud to seal the missive shut *could also be a ring, necklace, or bracelet. Make the seal special!
- A hand-painted mailing tube
LET’S TALK $$
I’ve created a number of funding goal scenarios -including the one used to come up with the listed $10,000 goal- in order to determine the number of FloraMissives or pledges needed to purchase the DTG printer AND be able to produce the rewards. I changed a number of variables in each projection (number of campaign missives, lower funding goals, fabric distributor’s average prices/yard, number of campaigning days, etc) and ultimately decided that $10,000 would be the best targeted goal. Still, I wanted to have a funding model for each possible scenario, as to not become overwhelmed should funding lovingly exceed my original goal.
TURNING WORDS INTO FORM
- Create a file -this can be words (long or short form), pictures, sheet music, etc. If it can be printed, then it can be a FloraMissive.
- Send the file -send the file(s) you would like printed, to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject titled: FloraMissive Order – Your Name.
- DONE! The FloraMissive is cut, printed/scented, folded, packaged, and sent off.
Where & When could FloraMissives be used?
FloraMissives can be used for numerous occasions. For example: want to send your beau a dozen roses? Why not make it a Baker’s Dozen with a Nola Granda?! I’ll send the FloraMissive to your Florist to have it included in the bouquet.
Hallmark and other domestic and foreign greeting card providers• Various Gift Shops• Mall Kiosks• Mass thank you letters• Performance ovations• Charity Races• Benefit Concerts• Galas• Birthdays• Quinceñeras• Funeral Arrangements• Wedding Arrangements• Debutant and Cotillion Arrangements• Random Love Letters….
Please help me bring life to FloraMissives and The HoneyB Corps. THANK YOU!!
Risks and challenges
I can get pretty obsessive when it comes to projects -which has only served me well as a classical musician- and I’ve obsessed over the entirety of the HoneyB Corps and (by extension) FloraMissives for nearly 3 years. My aim was to have FloraMissives as perfect as possible before creating a fundraiser campaign, but I’ve now reached a point where I cannot directly control all aspects of its creation.
Specifically for the Nola Granda Roses, the Sepal fittings are the most integral part of getting FloraMissives off the ground. It surprisingly took me 5 months and dozens of method trials to secure Nola Granda heads onto any stem without using adhesives, detracting from natural rose aesthetics, and all the while making it easily removable ONLY when intended. It took two months of coordinating with a 3D designer in Spain to turn my sketches into 3D virtual models. All the sepals must then be 3D printed, sent to me, and then made to fit onto stems. I’m, therefore, at the mercy of 3D print producers whom ARE NOT AT ALL behooved to follow my schedules.
To return total control to my obsessive hands, I’m devising a mold for liquid rubbers and plastics. This would allow me to make as many fittings as I need, when I need, while also providing additional controllable parameters not currently possible with 3D prints. The finishing touches on this mold are being processed, and once I’ve filed for its Patent, this will be the exclusive means of creating FloraMissive Sepals.